FOLLOWUP: Fourth of July fireworks debris around West Seattle

In our coverage last night, we asked for photos of fireworks debris readers found today. First, from Phil at Westcrest Park:

2:07 PM: From Christie at Highland Park Elementary:

From a texter at Alki Beach:

Next one is from Therese in The Junction:

She notes, “Partial debris pile from ONE household’s “celebration” in the alley directly behind Courtesy Tire, which went on until after 2:30 a.m. The smell is terrible, and of course it is impossible to pick up all the little bits.” Toxic, too. Photos from other areas? Send them and we will add – thank you.

ADDED 5:20 PM: From Jackie, near White Center:

Jackie says, “t was 3 am before the bombing stopped. I’ve never before seen residential fireworks the size of a case of beer.” Next, from Kayoko, at North Shorewood Park’s parking lot:

And from Laura at EC Hughes Playground:

43 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: Fourth of July fireworks debris around West Seattle"

  • brizone July 5, 2020 (2:10 pm)

    Wow.  How profoundly selfish.  People who wouldn’t lift a finger to help their community, no manner how minor an act or if slightly inconvenient for themselves.  Symptom of our current divide…

  • Howard July 5, 2020 (2:18 pm)

    Blowing things up and leaving others to deal with the aftermath is America 101

  • Just wondering July 5, 2020 (2:31 pm)

    What pigs!

  • Matt P July 5, 2020 (2:36 pm)

    The people who do this have no shame.  From one side of their mouth, they spout off about conservation and helping veterans and loving their country and then they go off and do this.  Despicable.

    • WW Resident July 5, 2020 (3:29 pm)

      @Matt P. You can’t be serious that only people “on the right” do this?

    • Agree July 5, 2020 (7:26 pm)

      I agree with you.  I’m sure they were dressed head-to-toe in American flag clothing, don’t even own a mask and threw away their TV channel changer because they only watch one channel…..

      • Rhetoric July 6, 2020 (7:55 am)

        All rhetoric, you have no clue of the demo of the people that did this.  With your crystal ball, what is the demo of the people that leave trash in the parks on a regular basis?  How about all of the cigarette butts?Keep it to the facts.  It’s a disrespectful mess.  That’s all we know.

  • 4th July 5, 2020 (2:55 pm)

    What pathetic slobs. This is how you celebrate “freedom”? Are there any cameras in these areas? They should be sentenced to community service picking up their own mess and cleaning these grounds all summer .

  • DISGUSTING July 5, 2020 (3:08 pm)


  • So Sad July 5, 2020 (3:11 pm)

    Typical selfish, self-entitled, self-centered, inconsiderate, disrespectful behavior of today’s society. Do the right thing, treat people the right way, and many of today’s issues will take care of themselves. 

  • SC July 5, 2020 (3:25 pm)

    I didn’t get a chance to take a photo, but there’s a massive pile of debris sitting on the road outside North Shorewood park. I guess keeping the neighborhood up until nearly 2am wasn’t inconsiderate enough. 

  • Yma July 5, 2020 (3:36 pm)

    Hey @MattP do you have proof of what you post?yes – I  admit, I like to look at the fireworks ( before midnight). And yes – anyone doing fireworks should  have water on hand and CLEAN UP!  Did a random bit of cleaning up today myself. And no – we didn’t have fireworks – only pop -its and some sparklers. All picked up.

  • Sunflower July 5, 2020 (3:38 pm)

    It makes me sad that this is how some celebrate their freedom, by creating toxic trash in their community.

    With freedom comes responsibility, the responsibility to make right choices.

  • Graciano July 5, 2020 (3:49 pm)

    I like fireworks, I like setting them off…, I no longer set them off, cause of the mess.

    If you do set them off, you should be responsible to clean up afterwards..

  • Joan July 5, 2020 (4:20 pm)

    I don’t understand who the heck they think is going to clean this up, and who pays for that. WE the taxpayers. A colossal waste of money that could go to other things like park maintenance and improvements. These people are not who we want as citizens.  It’s disgraceful. Carry a garbage bag for Pete’s sake and pack it out!!  Too heavy for your small hands?

  • flimflam July 5, 2020 (4:45 pm)

    i’m just going to go ahead and assume all the “suck it up for one night” posters are out in droves helping to clean, right?

  • Jonah July 5, 2020 (4:46 pm)

    Firework trash was the WORST I’ve ever seen on my morning Alki Ave. walk. Loud booms were going off until 3:30am in area of 61st and Alki.

  • Sigh July 5, 2020 (4:47 pm)

    We woke up, walked down to beach, and cleaned up for an hour. It didn’t even make a dent in the trash all over the beach, streets, gutters, etc. We found two piles of buried trash still smoldering from previous evening. Really saddened by people who trash our neighborhood. You kept us up all night and we cleaned up after you! 

  • Vpiper July 5, 2020 (4:48 pm)

    WS Blog – How about a round up of ALL the lost pets and those pets that lost their lives at veterinary emergency hospitals over this holiday? Heartbreaking. 

    • WSB July 5, 2020 (4:56 pm)

      The lost/found pets reported to us are always on that page of our site. As for emergency clinics – I don’t have any access to that info…

  • Wsguy123 July 5, 2020 (5:26 pm)

    I really appreciate the citizens that clean up on Alki and the various parks every year. It needs to be done but I’m afraid it’s just rewarding bad behavior. Some people probably pack out their own fireworks/trash but from the looks of things, 99.9% do not and it’s their trash so they should be taking care of it.

  • Chris July 5, 2020 (6:04 pm)

    So upset as fireworks starting again.   Finally got dogs calmed down. 

  • Duffy July 5, 2020 (6:11 pm)

    Makes me sick. Using our community for its beauty, trashing it then leaving us with all of the garbage.

  • Snug Haven July 5, 2020 (6:29 pm)

    Four requests were asked of us recently;-Don’t drive on the low bridge (during restricted hours)-Wear a mask in public-Live to understand BLM message-Don’t use illegal fireworks Requests that were/are routinely ignored by us. If you care to, maybe while social distancing at home, google “with freedom comes responsibility”.  The range of quotes from Bob Dylan to Eleanor Roosevelt, Ronald Reagan to Nelson Mandela, is eye opening.  It may help to understand where some of our neighbor’s responses to simple and difficult requests originate. Or listen to Bowie’s, “I’m Afraid of Americans”.  (Bones UK does a rousing cover.)

  • WSDUDEMAN July 5, 2020 (6:39 pm)

    Matt P, I’m interested in your discussions with each specific group of individuals that left this garbage behind. Or perhaps you were just making an irresponsible generalization?

  • swac July 5, 2020 (8:07 pm)

    I’m the manage at the Southwest Athletic Complex, and I want to thank the community around Sealth/Denny area for helping in bagging up the mess from last night!

  • Jade Kelly July 5, 2020 (8:27 pm)

    Really? Nobody is gonna give credit to the ones that clean up. I saw people at Alki pack not just theirs, but debris abandoned by others, as well. The amount of subtle self centeredness, that permeates the fireworks discussion, year after year, is amazing. I agree that there was a lot more being launched, then I can remember, but it’s two days out of the summer. To celebrate the concept and vision of this great nation, and the hope that one day we’ll actually embody that. Bigger things happening in the world right now. Give yourself a break and breathe. It’ll be alright.

    • Tone deaf July 5, 2020 (10:45 pm)

      This is so invalidating. This has been almost a week straight for some of us. BrEaThE iN bReAtHe OuT is not helpful to people with combat-related PTSD. You know, those same people who helped “keep this nation great.” 

  • Robert Schmidt July 5, 2020 (8:57 pm)

    But,but, these are illegal.

  • Ben July 5, 2020 (9:26 pm)

    I’ve always wondered how a city, with the conscience we seem to have, has ever tolerated shooting fireworks over and into water. I get it’s a way to keep them away from houses and dogs, etc. But it just seems like the laziest way to do it. Because it looks nice and ‘no cleanup’.

    • WTF July 6, 2020 (8:36 am)

      It’s called hypocrisy and this city is riddled with it. The entitlement haters somehow become very entitled. They know it’s wrong but do it anyway. They have no regard for property, people or animals.

  • ENOUGH July 5, 2020 (9:49 pm)

    We’re going on six nights in a row here on alki, who tf do we need to get ahold of to make this bullsh-t stop already 

  • Plf July 5, 2020 (10:10 pm)

    Oink 🐷 oink

  • Ugh July 5, 2020 (11:12 pm)

    Trying to sleep in West Seattle. People are still shooting off fireworks. Please stop some others have to work in the morning. 

  • Fred July 6, 2020 (5:34 am)

    We need to ban fireworks period!  Every year apartments, houses, wildfires are caused by irresponsibility and every year fireworks get louder and bigger.  My neighbor a couple of doors down has a rocket launcher for fireworks and does this all year round (all us neighbors have called the police).  ENOUGH!  Time to end this noise

  • Wanderer July 6, 2020 (6:03 am)

    On a brighter note…the hubby and I went to Alki yesterday to help clean. By the time we got there, around 11am, there was barely anything to pick up. We made our way along the Alki Trail, picking up small bits of paper and the occasional firecracker. THANKS to all those who got there earlier and picked up the majority of debris. We live in a wonderful, caring community.

  • anonyme July 6, 2020 (7:16 am)

    I didn’t think that any of my closest neighbors had been shooting off fireworks, but my patio is littered just the same, including a large, half-burned tube.  There is debris, once burning, on my roof.  How is any of this mess justifiable?  The toxic, carcinogenic dust and debris will now settle onto the soil and cling to pets and wildlife and children, where it can easily be ingested or absorbed into the skin.   Noise is not the only fallout from this horrible ‘occasion’.   However, last night was the fourth night with little sleep as the bombing continued  (so much for the “one/two night a year BS theories).  From the research I’ve done, it appears that the large stockpiles of explosives used this year are in violation of state law and ATF regulations.  I’m going to write to the ATF and see if they will get involved as our local government has no interest in either upholding law or protecting citizens.  We desperately need some grownups in charge for a change.
    P.S. Hope Miles made it through, sweet old guy.

    • zark00 July 6, 2020 (3:10 pm)

      Burning stuff on your roof is NOT ok – it’s actually a crime if you could figure out who shot them off.  While the noise does not bother me, we personally choose to only use fountains and sparklers that make no noise – we don’t even do piccolo pete’s anymore – it just feels selfish to do to our neighbors. Environmentally though, there have been no conclusive studies of the carcinogenic properties of fire works fallout. Closest is a study that confirmed increased levels of perchlorates in waterways after a major, like city sponsored type of size, fire works display.  The increased perchlorates were detectable for about 14 hours. Smoke, dust, debris, from “personal” fireworks is far lower than from the daily use of diesel fuel in our area – we should prob go after diesel first, it’s a much bigger offender.  Overall the environmental impact of just shooting the fireworks off is negligible to undetectable.  There just aren’t enough of them frequently enough to have much of an impact. All of that said – not cleaning up the left overs is pretty bad environmentally; worse than shooting them off.  You have to hate wildlife to leave that stuff out for birds to build with, rodents to chew and eat, etc. Of course, off leash dogs in Lincoln park have destroyed more wildlife habitat than 40 years of fireworks – scofflaw dog sowers in Seattle absolutely hate wildlife and actively participate in destroying it.

  • JohnH July 6, 2020 (5:26 pm)

    Classic modern day human behavior – make a mess and expect “someone else” to clean it up.Put whatever adjective in front of mess to apply to any other situation.

  • Doodle July 7, 2020 (12:34 am)

    Big signs around Lincoln Park announce that it currently closes at 8 PM. After 11 on Sunday night, continuous volleys of fireworks started going up from the south end of the park, visible and audible for at least a quarter mile in all directions. I called SPD as I walked down toward the activity, and said yes when asked if I’d like an officer to meet me. Almost 20 high school age kids were at the beach lighting one rocket after another for more than 30 minutes. I was glad the rockets weren’t going toward the hillside. Shortly after my call, I rec’d a VM message from SPD saying no one would meet me, “due to priority status city-wide, and due to Covid-19 priority status, we’re trying to minimize officer contact. Priority response means officers only respond to in-progress life-threatening emergencies, but we do have the call in here for dispatch about the fireworks.” After 30 minutes with no police response, the kids took off in their cars and I went home. One more negative experience with SPD makes it even easier to support defunding.

  • anonyme July 7, 2020 (6:47 am)

    Someone set off a bomb in Arbor Heights last night that actually shook the foundation of my house.  This was something far more powerful than an M-80, which the ATF lists as illegal.  I spoke to a cop several years ago who confirmed that fireworks are being combined into larger bombs.  That is evident to anyone who has experienced an explosion like the one last night.  The idea that fireworks are sold in such mass quantities with so little regulation boggles the mind, not to mention the complete lack of enforcement in regard to fireworks violations.  You are far more likely to be ticketed for jaywalking than for setting off explosives.  Anyone ever hear of the Boston Marathon bombing?  Bombs were constructed from fireworks.  It’s time to completely ban consumer fireworks.

  • Jo July 7, 2020 (6:49 am)

    I don’t know why people think it’s okay to leave fireworks behind and create such a mess, it’s truly devastating to our environment. I have been walking around my neighborhood, down Avalon, and down Alki and picking up trash on my walks. I will fill up a tall garbage bag within a half mile, go out again in 2 weeks to do the same and fill up another garbage bag. It’s very discouraging:(  Who litters anymore?! If there are fines for littering why are we not calling more people in as witnesses? I continue to pick up garbage at least 3x a month but I wish as a community we did more. With everyone being outside more for walks we should all try to contribute and call people in so they get a fine for littering! People need to be held’s not okay to throw garbage out their window.  

  • Leah July 7, 2020 (10:27 am)

    Days after July 4th and explosions and fire at 2:55 am at the High Point Community Center. 

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